Did the Zapatistas actually kill anyone?

Did the Zapatistas actually kill anyone?

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The armed Zapatista movement started in 1994 as an armed revolution and spanned more than 20 years.

Disambiguation - this is the 1983/1994 movement, not the 1910 movement.

It is surprising to note that there seem to be no records of them actually killing anyone, while the counter-revolutionary forces have killed several Zapatistas.

“After they took San Cristobal, the Zapatistas went into combat at the Rancho Nuevo military base, the nearest base to San Cristobal de las Casas. I was there, this photo is mine. They are dead Zapatistas killed in battle. They were also ambushed. When I took this photo, 20 or so of them died. They were uniformed, they had been killed barely 20 minutes before. We heard the bullets… It was horrible.”

Citation taken from this photo report where you can see several pictures of dead Zapatistas. You can also see photos of the guerillas with weapons and practicing.

However, Wikipedia and other articles such as the one mentioned earlier only claim killing by the army and not the Zapatistas. The Chiapas Movement Wiki does claim that one soldier was killed on 2nd February 2011 (all other killed are the Zapatistas).

A post from 2014 claims that the media is distorting facts about the conflict and that the Zapatistas have been on the receiving end.

Subcommandante Marcos claims:

"We didn't go to war to kill or be killed. We went to war in order to be heard."

But it is hard to belive that in 20 years of armed conflict the Zapatistas have not actually attacked or killed anyone (or at least more than the claim of 1 sole soldier).

What is the truth about casualties inflicted by them?

MEXICO CITY - Hundreds of armed Indian peasants attacked four cities and towns in the southeastern state of Chiapas on Saturday. At least three police officers were killed and 18 were wounded, news reports said. LATimes

Rebels held the towns for several days, battling with Mexican troops before withdrawing into the surrounding jungle. More than 100 people were killed in the initial battles. Brittanica

Emiliano Zapata

Emiliano Zapata Salazar (Spanish pronunciation: [emiˈljano saˈpata] 8 August 1879 – 10 April 1919) became a leading figure in the Mexican Revolution of 1910–1920, the main leader of the people's revolution in the Mexican state of Morelos, and the inspiration of the agrarian movement called Zapatismo.

Zapata was born in the rural village of Anenecuilco in Morelos State, in an era when peasant communities came under increasing pressure from the small-landowning class who monopolized land and water resources for sugar-cane production with the support of dictator Porfirio Díaz (President 1877-1880 and 1884-1911). Zapata early on participated in political movements against Díaz and the landowning hacendados, and when the Revolution broke out in 1910 he was thus positioned as a central leader of the peasant revolt in Morelos. Cooperating with a number of other peasant leaders, he formed the Liberation Army of the South, of which he soon became the undisputed leader. Zapata's forces contributed to the fall of Díaz, defeating the Federal Army in the Battle of Cuautla (May 1911), but when the revolutionary leader Francisco I. Madero became president he disavowed the role of the Zapatistas, denouncing them as simple bandits. In November 1911 Zapata promulgated the Plan de Ayala, which called for substantial land reforms, redistributing lands to the peasants. Madero sent the Federal Army to root out the Zapatistas in Morelos. Madero's generals employed a scorched-earth policy, burning villages and forcibly removing their inhabitants, and drafting many men into the Army or sending them to forced-labor camps in southern Mexico. Such actions strengthened Zapata's standing among the peasants, and Zapata succeeded in driving the forces of Madero (led by Victoriano Huerta) out of Morelos. In a coup against Madero in February 1913, Huerta took power in Mexico, but a coalition of Constitutionalist forces in northern Mexico led by Venustiano Carranza, Álvaro Obregón and Francisco "Pancho" Villa ousted him in July 1914 with the support of Zapata's troops. Zapata did not recognize the authority that Carranza asserted as leader of the revolutionary movement, continuing his adherence to the Plan de Ayala.

In the aftermath of the revolutionaries' victory over Huerta, they attempted to sort out power relations in the Convention of Aguascalientes (October to November 1914). Zapata and Villa broke with Carranza, and Mexico descended into a civil war among the winners. Dismayed with the alliance with Villa, Zapata focused his energies on rebuilding society in Morelos (which he now controlled), instituting the land reforms of the Plan de Ayala. As Carranza consolidated his power and defeated Villa in 1915, Zapata initiated guerrilla warfare against the Carrancistas, who in turn invaded Morelos, employing once again scorched-earth tactics to oust the Zapatista rebels. Zapata once again re-took Morelos in 1917 and held most of the state against Carranza's troops until he was killed in an ambush in April 1919.

Article 27 of the 1917 Mexican Constitution was drafted in response to Zapata's agrarian demands. [1]

After his death, Zapatista generals aligned with Obregón against Carranza and helped drive Carranza from power (1920). In 1920 Zapatistas managed to obtain powerful posts in the government of Morelos after Carranza's fall. They instituted many of the land reforms envisioned by Zapata in Morelos.

Zapata remains an iconic figure in Mexico, used both as a nationalist symbol as well as a symbol of the neo-Zapatista movement.


In the work, Verrall doubts the Holocaust death toll, criticising the claim which says that "no less than six million Jews exterminated" in concentration camps. The booklet targets various war crime trials, the best known of these being the Nuremberg trials and the Adolf Eichmann trial, criticising their legal integrity and the standards of evidence presented, as well as the impartiality and objectivity of the judges.

Verrall also attempts to demonstrate in the book that censuses and population charts show that the European Jewish population figures do not allow for a figure of six million Jews to have been murdered. He argues that the total Jewish population in Nazi-controlled Europe after emigrations and evacuations was "around three million".

He further argues that the scale of the Holocaust had been exaggerated by the Allies

  1. to hide their own guilt over such things as the atomic bombs dropped on Japanese cities, the air raids of predominantly civilian towns such as Dresden, and the Allies' own human-rights abuses [5]
  2. and as a pretext for the establishment of the state of Israel, which he predicates on the commission of atrocities against the Palestinian population. [5]

Verrall's aim is to argue that the history of the 'six million' holocaust is used to discourage any form of nationalism and is a danger to the preservation of the Anglo-Saxon race: "No one could have anything but admiration for the way in which the Jews have sought to preserve their race through so many centuries, and continue to do so today. In this effort they have frankly been assisted by the story of the Six Million, which, almost like a religious myth, has stressed the need for greater Jewish racial solidarity. Unfortunately, it has worked in quite the opposite way for all other peoples, rendering them impotent in the struggle for self-preservation." [6]

In discussing the Gerstein report, the pamphlet states that "Gerstein's sister was congenitally insane and died by euthanasia", effectively admitting the mass murder of civilians by the Nazis in the T4 program.

In writing his booklet, Verrall had used material published in the 1950s and 1960s and most of the inaccuracies of his booklet were errors originally made by Paul Rassinier whose works Verrall had used extensively. [7]

The booklet was examined by the Supreme Court of Canada in 1985 and 1988 in the prosecution of the publisher Zündel under the Criminal Code, section 181, of spreading false news. The 1985 conviction was overturned on appeal, leading to a second prosecution in 1988 which again resulted in a sentence of 15 months. [8]

As part of Zündel's legal defence, Zündel hired Fred A. Leuchter to visit the Auschwitz and Majdanek concentration camps. [9] [10] At the trial, Leuchter was required to defend his report in his capacity as expert witness however, he was dismissed because during the proceedings it became apparent that he had neither the qualifications nor experience to act as such. [11] The 1988 trial judge concluded that the booklet "misrepresented the work of historians, misquoted witnesses, fabricated evidence, and cited non-existent authorities."

The Supreme Court did find that in the previous lower court trial, the jury were improperly instructed:

The jury was instructed that it was entitled to infer from the judge's instruction that because the Holocaust must be regarded as proven, the accused must have known it to be proven and must be taken to have published his pamphlet deliberately for personal motives, knowing the falsity of his assertion to the contrary. . The verdict flowed inevitably from the indisputable fact of the publication of the pamphlet, its contents' divergence from the accepted history of the Holocaust, and the public interest in maintaining racial and religious tolerance. [4]

However, in reviewing the proceedings of the lower court trial, the Supreme Court were convinced that the facts in the pamphlet were indeed false:

[During the previous trial] the appellant's allegations of fact in the pamphlet were divided into 85 extracts and rebutted one by one. The trial judge summarized this material at length for the jury but it will suffice here to point only to some of the more egregious examples. The pamphlet alleged that a memorandum from Joseph Goebbels revealed that the Final Solution was never more than a plan to evacuate Jews to Madagascar. It was shown that there was no such memorandum but that the reference was to Goebbels' diary entry of March 7, 1942. This diary extract was adduced and shown to state nothing of the kind. The Crown went on to point out that the entry for March 27, 1942 made clear that the Final Solution was, in fact, genocide: "Not much will remain of the Jews. On the whole, it can be said that about 60 per cent of them will have to be liquidated, whereas only about 40 per cent can be used for forced labor . "

The pamphlet alleges that no documentary evidence exists of the Nazi plan to exterminate the Jews. The Crown adduced speeches by Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS, made on October 4, 1943, to his troops in Posen in which he refers to the program of extermination of the Jews. Himmler stated: "I also want to talk to you, quite frankly, on a very grave matter. Among ourselves it should be mentioned quite frankly, and yet we will never speak of it publicly. . I mean the clearing out of the Jews, the extermination of the Jewish race . "

The appellant argued that the term "exterminate" used in this passage really meant "deport". It was left to the jury to consider whether they accepted that this was a possible interpretation.

The Crown also adduced the December 9, 1942, entry in the diary of Hans Frank, Governor-General of occupied Poland's 'General Government' territory, describing the annihilation of 3.5 million Jews in the General Government and numerous documents adduced at the Nuremberg trials, including the daily reports of the Einsatzgruppen (action groups) enumerating the death tolls of Jews in the USSR. In a report to Hitler of December 20, 1942, Himmler indicates that the Einsatzgruppen had executed 363,211 Jews between August and November, 1942.

The pamphlet alleged, purportedly relying on a Red Cross report, that all concentration camps were really humane work camps. Mr. Biedermann, a delegate of the International Committee of the Red Cross, testified that the Red Cross Report pertained exclusively to prisoner of war camps as the Red Cross personnel had not been inside any camps in which civilians were detained. The Crown adduced evidence from Professor Hilberg that while some camps had labour facilities annexed to them, Belzec, Treblinka, Sobibor and Chelmno were exclusively "killing factories" and that gas chambers were in operation at Auschwitz-Birkenau and Majdanek. The numbers of Jews slaughtered was verifiable from railway records showing the payments per person made for transport to the camps. These numbers were compared with those having left the camps or who were found there after liberation.

On and on, the Crown showed that the appellant misrepresented the work of historians, misquoted witnesses, fabricated evidence, and cited non-existent authorities. [4]

Ultimately the Supreme Court concluded:

The conflict between the assertions made by the appellant and those made by orthodox Holocaust historians cannot be resolved through reasoned debate. Orthodox historians point to sources which support their theories the appellant and other "revisionist" historians point to documents which do not exist or which do not say what they claim they do. The pamphlet Did Six Million Really Die? does not fit with received views of reality because it is not part of reality. [4]

Hugh Trevor-Roper Edit

Although in the end he was not required to do so, the historian Hugh Trevor-Roper offered to give evidence, stating that "behind a simulated objectivity of expression, it is in fact an irresponsible and tendentious publication which avoids material evidence and presents selected half-truths and distortions for the sole purpose of sowing anti-Semitic propaganda". [12]

Anthony Hancock re-published Did Six Million Really Die? and made a significant amount of money from doing so, [ vague ] to the point where he was sued for royalties in the High Court in 1982. [13]

In 1975 South African authors Arthur Suzman and Denis Diamond published a book confronting the claims made by Verrall titled Six Million Did Die (Johannesburg). A second edition of the book was published in 1978. The first half of the book seeks to disprove claims made by Verrall and the second to provide further evidence of the Holocaust.

In the 1978 official bulletin, entitled "False Propaganda", the ICRC denounced Holocaust denial and confirmed that the agency "Never published—or even compiled—statistics of this kind which are being falsely attributed to it" and stated that its mission was "to help war victims, not to count them". [14] [15] Verrall also misused ICRC statistics to conclude that the number of people who died in Nazi prisons and camps from 1939 to 1945 was "300,000, not all of whom were Jews", but this was only in reference to "Germans and German Jews" and not nationals of other countries, later (and more complete) counts of the dead concord with estimates given by the International Tracing Service and other Holocaust researchers. [16] [17]

In 1985 and 1988 Verrall's publisher Ernst Zündel was tried in Canada on charges of "false news". He was found guilty and sentenced to 15 months in prison. On appeal his conviction was overturned by the Canadian Supreme Court's landmark decision R v Zundel, when it declared that the law under which he had been charged, reporting false news, was unconstitutional. [4] [18]

Did Six Million Really Die? was banned in Germany and South Africa. [19]

In 2017, removed the book along with other Holocaust-denying books from its U.S. and U.K. sites. [20] [21]

Italian industrial/EDM band "Tourdeforce" mention this pamphlet in their song "DSMRD", contained in the album Jedem das Seine. The song contains lyrics such as "did six million really die?" and "200000 perished in Nazi concentration camps, and not one by gas", "German is paying millions and millions of Reichsmark because Germans have a guilt complex about having gassed six million Jews".

Did Paul kill any of the Christians he persecuted?

Did Saul /Paul ever kill anyone when he was in pursuit of Christians or did he just have them jailed before his conversion?

To be honest, I am not sure why it would matter whether he did or did not actually kill any individuals. What I can say for sure is that he did approve of the arrest and killing of Christians. I know this because Acts 7:60 mentions this fact. Paul pursued disciples all the way to Damascus, with the intent of jailing them and probably of killing them (Acts 9:1 which mentions “murderous threats”). We can assume that this was not his first involvement in arresting believers and we can assume that, although he may not ever have been the one to actually throw stones, he was a ringleader behind people being killed. My thought on this is that it is fairly likely that such a highly important teacher and pharisee as Paul probably would not get his hands “dirty” actually killing people. It is more likely that he saw to the deed happening and let others do it for him. Like I already said, whether he did the actual killing or only instigated or approved of it does not seem to matter all that much for us. Paul considered himself “the worst of sinners.” We can assume that his violent attacks on disciples of Jesus (whether he actually did the violent acts or not) were part of the reason Paul felt he was “the worst of sinners.”

The Legend of What Actually Lived in the “No Man’s Land” Between World War I’s Trenches

During World War I, No Man’s Land was both an actual and a metaphorical space. It separated the front lines of the opposing armies and was perhaps the only location where enemy troops could meet without hostility. It was in No Man's Land that the spontaneous Christmas truce of December 1914 took place and where opposing troops might unofficially agree to safely remove their wounded comrades, or even sunbathe on the first days of spring.

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But it could also be the most terrifying of places one that held the greatest danger for combatants. “Men drowning in shell-holes already filled with decaying flesh, wounded men, beyond help from behind the wire, dying over a number of days, their cries audible, and often unbearable to those in the trenches sappers buried alive beneath its surface," wrote scholar Fran Brearton in her 2000 history The Great War in Irish Poetry: W.B. Yeats to Michael Longley. No Man’s Land, said poet Wilfred Owen, was “like the face of the moon, chaotic, crater-ridden, uninhabitable, awful, the abode of madness.”

In the Oxford English Dictionary, Nomanneslond, ca. 1350, comes from the Middle English, and was “a piece of ground outside the north wall of London, formerly used as a place of execution.” The phrase took on a military connotation as early as 1864, but it became an especially prevalent term during the First World War. The German equivalent was Niemandsland, while the French used the English term le no man’s land.

But it was during the Great War that a legend arose out of the real-life horrors that occurred in this wartime hellhole. Part Night of the Living Dead and part War Horse, like all oft-told tales, it had several variants, but the basic kernel warned of scar-faced and fearless deserters banding together from nearly all sides—Australian, Austrian, British, Canadian, French, German, and Italian (though none from the United States)—and living deep beneath the abandoned trenches and dugouts. According to some versions, the deserters scavenged corpses for clothing, food and weapons. And in at least one version, the deserters emerged nightly as ghoulish beasts, to feast upon the dead and dying, waging epic battles over the choicest portions.

Historian Paul Fussell called the tale the “finest legend of the war, the most brilliant in literary invention and execution as well as the richest in symbolic suggestion” in his prize-winning 1975 book. Fussell, a professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania who had served as a lieutenant during World War II, knew well the horrors of combat, which he vividly described in his 1989 Wartime.

One of the earliest published versions of the “wild deserters” legend appeared in the 1920 memoir The Squadroon by Ardern Arthur Hulme Beaman, a lieutenant colonel in the British cavalry. No other telling of the legend—at least in print—is as horrifying as Beaman’s. Written just two years after the war’s end, Beaman's tale begins in early 1918 on the marshes of the Somme in northern France. This is where some of the bloodiest battles of the war were fought and Beaman is convinced that he has witnessed two dozen or so German prisoners of war vanish into the ground. He wants to send a search party into the maze of abandoned trenches but is advised against it because the area “was peopled with wild men, British, French, Australian, German deserters, who lived there underground, like ghouls among the mouldering dead, and who came out at nights to plunder and to kill. In the night, an officer told him, mingled with the snarling of carrion dogs, they often heard inhuman cries and rifle shots coming from that awful wilderness as though the bestial denizens were fighting among themselves.”

One poet described the horrors of the No Man's Land between the encamped armies as an "abode of madness." Here, a 1918 print depicts the removal of the dead from the trenches. (Library of Congress)

In the 1930 novel Behind the Lines (or Osbert Sitwell, a fifth baronet and a captain in the Army (he was also the younger brother of the poet Dame Edith Sitwell). In recalling Armistice Day 1918, Sitwell wrote, “For four long years . . . the sole internationalism—if it existed—had been that of deserters from all the warring nations, French, Italian, German, Austrian, Australian, English, Canadian. Outlawed, these men lived—at least, they lived—in caves and grottoes under certain parts of the front line. Cowardly but desperate as the lazzaroni of the old Kingdom of Naples, or the bands of beggars and coney catchers of Tudor times, recognizing no right, and no rules save of their own making, they would issue forth, it was said, from their secret lairs, after each of the interminable checkmate battles, to rob the dying of their few possessions—treasures such as boots or iron rations—and leave them dead.” Sitwell’s concluding note is equally chilling: British troops believed “that the General Staff could find no way of dealing with these bandits until the war was over, and that in the end they [the deserters] had to be gassed.”  

A more recent literary account comes in 1985 from No Man’s Land by Reginald Hill, author of some 50 novels, many of them police procedurals. The novel begins with Josh Routledge, a British deserter from the Battle of the Somme, and a German soldier-turned-pacifist, Lothar von Seeberg, being chased by mounted military police. Out of almost nowhere, a band of 40 deserters, mostly Australian, attack the military police, and take Josh and Lothar into their dugout. “They were a wild-looking gang, in dirty ragged clothing and with unkempt hair and unshaven faces. They were also very well armed.” In a second instance, these deserters come “swarming out of nowhere, out of the bowels of the earth, that’s how it looked. . . . They was scruffy, dead scruffy. Sort of rugged and wild-looking, more like a bunch of pirates than anything. There was one big brute, nigh on seven foot tall he looked.”

The legend seems to have also taken root in modern journalistic accounts. James Carroll in the International Herald Tribune noted in 2006 how World War I deserters refusing to fight “had organized themselves into a kind of third force—not fighters any more, but mere survivors, at home in the caverns. Dozens of them, perhaps hundreds. Human beings caring for one another, no matter what uniform they were wearing.” According to Carroll’s interpretation, these deserters were like angels, taking care of those who had fallen into the safety of the underground caverns—acting as a sane alternative to the insanity of war.

The wild deserters of no man’s land, whether angels or devils—or even flesh-eating ghouls who emerge only at night—is the stuff of a legend extremely rich in symbolic value. It reminds us today, a century after it began, of the madness, chaos and senselessness of all the horrors of war.

The Great War in Irish Poetry: W. B. Yeats to Michael Longley

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No Man's Land

Reginald Hill has been widely published both in England and the United States. He received Britain's most coveted mystery writers award, the Cartier Diamond Dagger Award, as well as the Golden Dagger for his Dalziel/Pascoe series. He lives with his wife in Cumbria, England.

About James Deutsch

James Deutsch is a curator at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, where he has helped develop exhibitions on the Peace Corps, China and World War II, among others. In addition, he serves as an adjunct professor—teaching courses on American film history and folklore—in the American Studies Department at George Washington University.

Did the Khmer Rouge really kill everyone with glasses?

of the events that took place there but unsure if this glasses cliché was actually what happened.

Could someone explain maybe where this came from, or if it is true? Thanks

The notion that the Khmer Rouge, or the ideologues and leaders of the Communist Party of Kampuchea (CPK) ‘decided to kill anyone who wore glasses’, (or that this is simply what happened) is commonly shared when relaying some of the horrors associated with life in Cambodia during the revolutionary period (1975-1979). While it is useful in a sense (like how a sort of broad ‘fable’ might be in simplifying, condensing and distilling some complex story down to a single ‘saying’), there is also truth to the claim, but perhaps not in a way that confirms the general idea that ‘the Khmer Rouge killed everyone with glasses’.

So.. I will try and unpack that a little and hopefully give you an idea of why this is such a common thing to say about the Khmer Rouge and to the extent that it maps onto reality.

Its helpful to begin this answer with a couple of slogans that were commonly used by Khmer Rouge cadre that emphasise some of the CPK’s ideology in relation to education.

With the Angkar, we shall make a Great Leap forward, a prodigious Great Leap forward

This is sometimes translated as ‘super great leap forward’, but regardless of which you choose the relationship of the CPK leaders to Maoism is apparent in this slogan. The CPK leadership, particularly Pol Pot, had seen China during the ‘great leap forward’, and had assumed (as the Maoist propaganda would have confirmed) that it was indeed a great success (it super wasn’t). The Cambodian revolution would borrow heavily from the Chinese, not just ideologically but also materially, and this meant that certain aspects of the Chinese revolutionary zeal were also imported – such as basing the revolution around the peasant class or focusing on agriculture. In the words of Henri Locard in Pol Pot’s Little Red Book:

“In brief, the Maoist revolution and above all the ‘cultural revolution’, was the revenge of the ignorant over the educated, the triumph of obscurantism, the meritocracy of our own world turned on its head: the fewer degrees you had, the more power you attained.”

Other Maoist inspired slogans included ‘The spade is your pen, the rice field your paper’, or ‘if you have a revolutionary position you can do anything comrade’. These were all part of the CPK’s vision for a Cambodia where basically the entire population was made to work in what could be described as the first modern slave state, where the entire countryside was to be transformed and cultivated to produce enough surplus crops to fund industrialisation and a pure communist revolution. The Cambodian revolution favoured those who were closer to their ‘ideal revolutionary’ the peasant farmer who was not hindered by the trappings of imperialism, capitalism and basically modernity. The quintessential example of that kind of person was the urban/city dwelling class (probably a quarter of the entire population) who had not actively supported the revolution and were associated with the ‘losing side’ of the country’s civil war. Those that had stayed in the city were tainted by what was seen as a choice to not support the revolution. These people were renamed ’17 April people’ or ‘new people’ once the cities had been emptied, and were now firmly on the bottom of the new social hierarchy that the CPK set up in Cambodia.

This is exemplified by another slogan of the Khmer Rouge ‘Those who have never laboured but slept comfortably, those must be made to produce fruit’, or ‘Comrade, you have been used to a comfortable and easy life’, these were pointed towards these ‘new people’ and highlight the attitude of the Khmer Rouge to them that also shows the vengeful nature of the Cambodian revolution. This idea of vengeance explains some of the excesses that led to a saying like ‘they killed everyone with glasses’ being so commonly associated with the period. A lot of power, that is the power to decide whether someone would be sentenced to death or not, rested in the hands of peasant revolutionaries who had fought an extremely brutal civil war, and were now victorious. They had only been taught that the people they were fighting against were bad, and what they were fighting for, was pure and correct. These ‘new people’ were often not seen as anything more than parasites. Most people have heard the most famous saying that explains this viewpoint: ‘To keep you is no gain, to destroy you is no loss’.

During the earliest periods of the CPK’s time in power, almost no information leaked out to the world about what was happening within Cambodia. However, the first refugees accounts that began to slowly come out as time went on told of an abomination. In Elizabeth Becker’s book she says that

‘refugees said Cambodians wearing eyeglasses were killed because the Khmer Rouge thought only intellectuals wore eyeglasses. They said that beautiful young women were forced to marry deformed Khmer Rouge veterans. They said there were no dogs left in the country because starving people had killed them all for food.’

She then sates that ‘These were exaggerations, but they were exaggerations such as are fables, based on a truth too awful to explain. The eyeglasses fable reflected how the Khmer Rouge had targeted intellectuals as dangerous and killed thousands for simply having an education.’

What this means is that the Khmer Rouge cadres would often target someone who they considered to be an ‘enemy’ based on very little, it could be a small infraction, a suspect biography, being accused of wrongdoing, associated with another suspect individual… anything that led to a perception that someone was ‘anti-revolutionary’. One thing that someone may have looked for would be a stereotype such as wearing glasses, or sometimes (as seen in the film the Killing Fields) checking someone’s hands to see if they were well worn or soft. This would supposedly indicate whether they were suitable to the manual labour of the regime or whether they had an educated (which was the same as being an elite) background. Remember this is a peasant revolution, and to the peasants class in Cambodia there was little difference between being ‘educated’ or being ‘rich’, both of these classes looked down upon you – but not in the new revolutionary society.

The point is that this would have undoubtedly happened – perhaps a lot – but it was not a concrete decree by the leadership of the CPK. There is no telegram that went out saying ‘kill everyone with glasses’, there were indoctrination sessions were people were taught to look out for enemies constantly – and which classes were more revolutionary than others – but a death sentence was routine in Democratic Kampuchea for a great deal of offences, however this was not exactly ‘spelt out’ to lower ranking cadre. Cadre were told to check biographies, and if yours was considered to be sufficiently ‘anti-revolutionary’, (that is considered to be so tainted by your former life that you were simply not a candidate to become part of the revolution) you would be killed. But having glasses – in and of itself – was not a death sentence. It certainly wouldn’t put you in a positive position though.

Philip Short, another journalist who wrote a book about the Cambodian revolution, stated that the ‘glasses fable’, was not even unique to the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia. He says that it can also be associated with the Khmer ‘Issarak’, which was a kind of proto-nationalist/semi socialist, anti-colonial movement in the 1940s. This group also reportedly harassed and killed glasses wearing people during this time, in what he says was a similar association of intellectuals to the corrupt society they were trying to overturn – again from an impoverished rural population base.

Somewhere around 2 million Cambodians died during the roughly four years that the CPK were in power around 900,000 of that number were ‘new people’ or part of urban social groups. The majority died from malnutrition, disease and overwork, however of the total 2 million people who perished, common estimates of death by execution ranges from around 500,000 to 750,000.* About one third of the total ‘new people’ died during the regime, they suffered disproportionately to the ‘old people’ class. The amount of deaths associated with having a ‘bad biography’ are probably in the hundreds of thousands, and of those there is no doubt some significant number that were targeted due to a loose association of elite/intellectual/capitalist with their ‘glasses’. However, as Becker points out the ensuing idea that ‘they killed everyone with glasses’ is more of a way of explaining some of these complex ideas related to the period rather than an actual aim of the CPK, who never said that ‘all intellectuals should die’. .Democratic Kampuchea operated within a system of administrative levels and zones that led to rather different applications of some of the ideologies of the CPK by some zone leaders than others, some places were worse off than others. However, this is not to say that the ‘general ideology’ of the CPK didn’t lead to some cadre actively targeting those who wore glasses as enemies of the revolution.

I hope that, in an around about way, began to answer your question.

Sources I used included:Locard Pol Pots Little Red Book

Becker When the War Was Over

Kiernan Khmer Rouge Regime (for death toll statistics)

*as ➪lamb' pointed out I should say that the estimate I use when talking about violent deaths is indeed lower than what is sometimes cited. The expert demographers report that I base these numbers on suggests the number of direct deaths caused by the Khmer Rouge (eg executions) to be between 800,000 and 1.1 million, you can find that report here. Although aware of this higher estimate I tend to use lower numbers for a variety of reasons that I explain in response to his question.

Muhammad Fact Check

During his lifetime, Muhammad is not known to have murdered anyone. Neither did Prophet Muhammad give any order to kill Jews. The story, though not proven to be authentic by some scholars, tells us that Jews were given the sentence of death for their treason according to the Jewish Law by the arbiter who was chosen by the said Jews themselves. Their arbiter made this decision with their willing appointment of him, per Biblical law (not Qur’anic law), and for the crime of high treason. Prophet Muhammad had no say in this matter, and gave no such order. more info&hellip

Myth #2: Prophet Muhammad permitted Muslims to lie (Taqiyya) to spread Islam

Did Prophet Muhammad teach Muslims to lie to spread Islam?

No. Prophet Muhammad forbade lying and treachery, and instead commanded Muslims to adhere to truth even if condemned themselves. Islam offers no refuge to those who lie, and instead holds truth as an uncompromising virtue. more info&hellip

Myth #3: Prophet Muhammad married Ayesha when she was underage

Did Muhammad marry A’isha when she was only six years old?

Narratives related to the time of the Prophet Muhammad show that A’isha for sure was not six years old at the time of her marriage but rather was 12-13 years of age, an age legally acceptable for marriage in this modern age even in the developed countries. more info&hellip

Myth #4: Prophet Muhammad taught terrorism and Jihad to conquer the world for Islam

Did Prophet Muhammad teach Muslims to use terrorism and Jihad to spread Islam?

Muhammad lived 23 years after his claim to prophethood. He lived in Mecca for the first 13 years of his prophecy and bore severe persecution along with his followers but did not take the law in his own hands. After migration to Medina, he was attacked and forced to defend himself against annihilation. All his wars were defensive. He neither used sword to convert anyone to Islam himself nor did his followers. more info&hellip

Myth #5: Prophet Muhammad taught death for apostasy and blasphemy

Did Prophet Muhammad teach death for apostasy and blasphemy?

All through his life, Muhammad taught and practiced complete freedom of religion. Neither the Holy Qur’an nor the sayings of practice of Muhammad support death penalty for apostasy or blasphemy. more info&hellip

Myth #6: Prophet Muhammad Launched Raids on Innocent Merchants

Did Prophet Muhammad attack innocent trade caravans to loot them?

No. Prophet Muhammad forbade offensive attacks of all forms. He only permitted fighting in self-defense, and specifically forbade attacking innocent trade caravans. more info&hellip

Myth #7: Muhammad initially permitted idol worship

Did Prophet Muhammad initially permit idol worship?

New-age critics of Islam incessantly repeat these allegations despite clear evidence to the contrary. The allegation that Prophet Muhammad initially permitted idolatry is one such example. more info&hellip

Myth #8: Muhammad demanded slaughter of the pluralistic Meccans

Did Muhammad demand slaughter of the Pluralistic Meccans?

Prophet Muhammad was anything but a persecutor. Rather, he was a model of compassion on such a profound level that even his most hardened enemies could not help but swear by God that he was not a violent man. more info&hellip

Myth #9: Muhammad Rejected Meccan Efforts to Establish Peace

Did Muhammad reject Meccan efforts to establish peace?

Prophet Muhammad relentlessly strove for peace while Meccans attempted to thwart every such effort. more info&hellip

Myth #10: Muhammad Left Mecca Because He Lost Abu Talib’s Protection

Did Muhammad leave Mecca because he lost Abu Talib’s protection?

Prophet Muhammad did not migrate due to a lack of protection from other men. His migration, in fact, was based upon Divine guidance to escape assassination. more info&hellip

Myth #11: Muhammad Connived Zainab and Zaid To Divorce

Did Muhammad connive Zainab and Zaid to divorce?

Had Prophet Muhammad engaged in any unbecoming behavior, no shortage of critics existed during his lifetime. Likewise, Zainab was Prophet Muhammad's cousin and he had ample opportunity to marry her before her marriage to Zaid was even a nascent possibility. more info&hellip

Myth #12: Muhammad Terrorized People to Accept Islam

Did Muhammad terrorize people to accept Islam?

Prophet Muhammad's scribe renounced Islam and was allowed to travel all the way back to Mecca without being harmed or hindered. This incident illustrates that people were not terrorized into accepting Islam by Muhammad. more info&hellip

Myth #13: Muhammad Violated The Chivalrous Arab War Code

Did Muhammad Violate The Chivalrous Arab War Code?

Pre-Islamic Arabs had no rules of war—women, children, elderly, livestock, the dead, clergy, homes, and greenery were all fair game. Prophet Muhammad set rules of engagement for his people and demanded strict compliance whether enemy observed any rules or not. more info&hellip

Myth #14: Muhammad Actively Massacred the Quraishi Army POW’s at Badr

Did Muhammad actively massacre the Quraishi Army POW’s at Badr?

At a time in Arabia when POWs were either put to death or enslaved, the captives at Badr were allowed to purchase their freedom. Those who could not purchase their freedom “suffered” the responsibility of teaching ten children how to read. Education was their ransom. No example in history can even compare to this high standard Prophet Muhammad demanded of the Muslims. more info&hellip

Myth #15: Muhammad Ordered Murder of Eight Men for Apostasy

Did Muhammad order the murder of eight men for apostasy?

Islam does not allow any worldly punishment, let alone death, for apostasy. more info&hellip

Myth #16: Muhammad broke a truce to mercilessly conquer Mecca

Did Muhammad break a truce to mercilessly conquer Mecca?

The truce was broken by a partner of the Meccans. Meccans knew in advance of the pending Muslim advance but did not come out to fight. Muhammad did not attack Mecca rather entered peacefully and forgave their transgressions against him and his followers. more info&hellip

Myth #17: Muhammad Promised Women in Heaven for Martyrs

Did Muhammad promise women in heaven for martyrs?

Both Prophet Muhammad and the Qur’an reject the concept of heavenly reward via, “sex with beautiful women for eternity.” Prophet Muhammad clarified that such an interpretation could not be an applicable interpretation of the relevant verses from the Holy Quran. more info&hellip

Myth #18: Muhammad violated his own rules of fasting

Did Muhammad violate his own rules of fasting?

This myth results from not grasping the meaning and extent of the rules governing fasting in Islam. Critics try to take advantage of any possible situation they can get hold of however incredible that may be. more info&hellip

Myth #19: Muhammad Endorsed Female Genital Mutilation

Did Muhammad endorse female genital mutilation?

The reports mentioning female genital mutilation (infibulations) are widely regarded as weak traditions amongst Islamic scholars, not to mention unsupported by any Qur’anic verse. It is practiced only by a minuscule minority among Muslims. If it were a part of Islamic faith, it would have been practiced widely by Muslims everywhere which in not the case. more info&hellip

Myth #20: Muhammad Taught that the Qur’an Sanctions Violence

Does the Quran sanction violence?

The Quran repeatedly condemns those who create violence and disorder. more info&hellip

Myth #21: Muhammad Taught Death for Apostasy

Did Muhammad teach death for apostasy?

Not only does Islam not prescribe death for apostates, the Qur’an was the first religious scripture to categorically declare, “There shall be no compulsion in religion.” [1] more info&hellip

Myth #22: Muhammad Taught that Islam Forbids Protection to non-Muslim Dwellings

Does Islam Forbid Protection to Non- Muslim Dwellings?

Prophet Muhammad established a unified sovereign nation based on religious freedom and mutual respect and trust. As Medina’s ruler, he ensured the Charter included Article 39—a requirement to seek mutual advice and consultation from the Jews—lest any party accuse the other of unjust or unilateral actions. Finally, Articles 44 and 49 hold both the Muslims and the Jews accountable for not fulfilling their obligation of loyalty to one another. more info&hellip

Myth #23: Muhammad Forbade Privacy to Non-Muslims

Did Muhammad Forbid Privacy to Non- Muslims?

Islam places great emphasis on privacy rights for all people. Not only did the Qur’an champion privacy rights centuries before any modern constitution, but also perhaps no law in history preserves the right to privacy as thoroughly and emphatically as does the Qur’an. more info&hellip

Myth #24: Islam as taught by Muhammad is Anti-Semitic

Is the Islam that Muhammad taught Anti- Semitic?

Prophet Muhammad's treatment of Jews in Medina, demonstrates the benevolent treatment Muslims afforded Jews. Had Islam endorsed the destruction of Jews, why did Jews flourish in parts of North Africa, Jerusalem, Persia and Spain under Muslim rule? [1] more info&hellip

Myth #25: Muhammad rejects the Golden Rule and his teachings forbid befriending non-Muslims

Does Muhammad reject the Golden Rule and do his teachings forbid befriending non- Muslims?

The Qur’an commands Muslims to treat others as they would like to be treated, even if they must suffer through negative treatment. The amnesty Prophet Muhammad offered to his Meccan persecutors excellently personifies this teaching. more info&hellip

Myth #26: Muhammad Ordered Muslims to Fight Jews

Are Muslims ordered by Muhammad to fight Jews?

The tradition which is presented to prove that Muhammad ordered Muslims to kill Jews concerns a future situation of conflict between Muslims and Jews and has nothing to do with day-to-day Muslim-to-Jew relations. more info&hellip

Myth #27: Muhammad taught that Islam Endorses Concubines

Does Islam endorse concubines?

Short response: The Holy Qur’an has condemned fornication and adultery [1]. Islam does not permit concubinage, and fornication and adultery trigger the penalty of physical reprimand [2]. Abu Musa al-Ash‘ari recalls that Prophet Muhammad said, “Any man who has a slave-girl whom he teaches good manners so that she has good manners and educates her in the best possible way and then frees her and marries her has two rewards.” [3] more info&hellip

Myth #28: The Islamic Civilization that Muhammad established, Is And Always Has Been Archaic

Is the Islamic civilization archaic?

The Qur’an, more than 140 times, highlights knowledge as a distinguishing characteristic of believers. Prophet Muhammad declared, “Seeking knowledge is a duty upon every Muslim.” [1] Archaic means, “obsolete - antiquated - old - ancient - out-of-date,” and Islam stands for the seeking of knowledge - thus it has always promoted advancement and freshness and growth - not the characteristics of an archaic system of thinking at all. more info&hellip

Myth #29: Islam, as taught by Muhammad, Requires a Female Rape Victim to Produce Four Witnesses

Does Islam require a female rape victim to produce four witnesses?

If someone accuses a woman of adultery then he or she must produce four witnesses to corroborate the accusation. Failing that, the woman is innocent, and the accuser is a liar. Calling for four witnesses, protects women against calumny. more info&hellip

Myth #30: Muhammad taught that Islam Seeks To Establish Caliphate to Conquer the World

Does Islam seek to establish caliphate to conquer the world?

The purpose of the establishment of Khilafat among Muslims is for reformation through love and amity. Only one Islamic organization has already re-established the caliphate. Not a decade or two old, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community’s caliphate was established in 1908. The Community’s membership is in the tens of millions and spans 200 countries—all united under one khalifa. Even when faced with bitter persecution, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Khilafat requires Ahmadi Muslims to be steadfast. more info&hellip

Myth #31: The Islam that Muhammad Taught Is Not a Religion But a Theocratic Political Ideology

Is Islam a theocratic political ideology rather than a religion?

Islam meets the general basic requirements envisaged for an acceptable religion forwarded by some anti-Islam forces. It provides freedom of choice, no coercion, and stands by and protects basics human rights of both Muslims and non-Muslims alike. more info&hellip

Myth #32: Islam Oppresses Dhimmis and Demands Jizya or Death

Does Islam oppress dhimmis and demand jizya or death?

Dhimmis had a special place in Medina. Prophet Muhammad said, “If anyone wrongs a man with whom a covenant has been made [i.e., a dhimmi], or curtails any right of his, or imposes on him more than he can bear, or takes anything from him without his ready agreement, I shall be his adversary on the Day of Resurrection.” [1] more info&hellip

Myth #33: Muhammad taught that only Martyrdom While Making Others Suffer Assures Paradise

Did Muhammad teach that martyrdom while making others suffer assures paradise?

No such teaching in Islam exists that “only assures martyrs [a] straight path to paradise.” Indeed throughout the Qur’an, Allah attributes many other traits to the believers. more info&hellip

Myth #34: Muhammad taught Muslims to Act Like An Army

Does Islam require the Muslims to act like an army?

Wherever the Qur’an permits fighting, it does so only for defensive purposes. Muslims are advised to resort to patience, prayer and even emigration to avoid war and bloodshed. more info&hellip

Myth #35: Islam, as taught by Muhammad and Democracy are Incompatible

Is Islam and Democracy incompatible?

Islam is flexible, and allows for democracy, monarchy, tribalism and other forms of government as long as they meet the requirements of absolute justice and consultation.[1] more info&hellip

Did the Zapatistas actually kill anyone? - History

Ah-- one of the great and spirited Bonnie and Clyde debates. This is a question which in fairness, should be expanded to ask-- how many did The Barrow Gang kill?? When addressing this long standing question of interest, rightfully discussion should also include, delving into some of the more hotly debated Barrow Gang killings and their participants. Many feel either 12 or 13-- are the correct number of known Barrow Gang killings. Although 12 of these murders are assured, I buck with tradition and go with 13-- as being the number of murders, committed by the West Dallas desperadoes and their associates.

In sorting out this question, first I feel it's fair to say that now 75 years later-- it's almost universally acknowledged by B&C experts that Bonnie Parker never killed anyone. In addition to direct culpability, Bonnie as all gang members would have almost certainly been considered accessories to murder-- for whichever killings were committed during their tenures. It's been well documented, that Bonnie loaded weapons with bullets that likely killed others. Also based on the evidence that exists, I for one am convinced-- Bonnie "did" fire weapons a number of times at living targets, however I can find nothing to support Bonnie hitting what she aimed at.

Clyde seems responsible for at least 6 murders, and possibly more of the Barrow Gang killings. In June 1933, Clyde admitted to having been obliged to kill 6 men who attempted to capture him. Clyde's deadly admission was witnessed by lawmen George Corey and Paul Hardy, when they were taken hostage after the Wellington incident. Now some may disagree, but if Clyde was true to his boast-- then it seems 6 of the 7 Barrow Gang killings to that point may have been committed by Clyde. In eliminating John Bucher , you would need to consider all of the next 6 killings to be attributed to Clyde Barrow.

There is debate over the killing of Doyle Johnson, since both Clyde and W.D. shot at Johnson. Many including Jones himself believe he felled Johnson. So even if you were to subtract the Doyle Johnson killing from Clyde's total and pin that one on W. D.-- and then count one of the 2 Grapevine murders for Clyde-- Clyde could still have been responsible for 6 of the killings. Also some consider Clyde's likely killing of Big Ed Crowder in the mix. I myself view Crowder as a pre -Barrow Gang killing, and do not include him within these numbers.

It's almost certain, that W. D. Jones who was a shooter in at least 6 gunfights-- killed at least one man and possibly more. Also Henry Methvin is thought to have killed 2, and depending on who you believe concerning the Grapevine murders, may have killed both motorcycle officers that fateful Easter Sunday-- making for a total of 3 killings. I as many, feel Henry killed one officer and Clyde killed the other. In addition, based on a death bed confession by Buck and W. D. corroboration-- Buck killed Henry Humphrey. And finally, Joe Palmer was reported to have killed Major Crowson -- and is thought to have murdered Wade McNabb .

McNabb is the wild card in determining the correct number Barrow Gang murders. As I see it, McNabb should count as the 13th victim of The Barrow Gang-- and if so, he would also qualify as the only hostage who was killed. The inclusion of McNabb all comes down to whether you believe the story told. On March 29 th , 1934 Wade Hampton McNabb is thought to have been kidnapped off a street in Gladewater , Texas by Clyde Barrow, Henry Methvin and Joe Palmer. Several days later, McNabb's body was found near the Texas--Louisiana line. The story goes that McNabb , who was a "Building Tender" at Eastham Prison-- was killed by Joe Palmer, because of his abuse of Palmer while in jail.

Although debatable, the murder of Wade McNabb is a compelling account which makes sense from a Barrow Gang perspective. Palmer had killed Crowson and apparently had a vendetta against McNabb-- which I feel he likely made good on, while in the company of Clyde Barrow and Henry Methvin. If so i t should stand to reason, that with Joe Palmer given credit for Major Crowson as a Barrow Gang killing-- it would be fair to add Palmer's likely murder of McNabb to the gang's deadly total.

Some might say as the McNabb killing can't be positively linked to Barrow and his cohorts, that McNabb can't be considered the 13 th Barrow Gang victim. It could also be thought that I'm veering slightly off course, from my usual staunchness in backing only verifiable accounts. But sometimes you've gotta go with your guts. I view this story as too logical, to feel others were responsible for this killing. Thus I'll go out on a limb and join others, who count McNabb as the 13 th Barrow Gang murder.

In order to pay our respects, here are the 12 known and 1 suspected victim-- who lost their lives at the hands of The Barrow Gang. Of course with their passing-- came much heartache and hardship for their families.

John N. Bucher -- Hillsboro , Texas April 27 th , 1932
Eugene Moore-- Atoka , Oklahoma August 5 th , 1932
Howard Hall-- Sherman, Texas October 11th, 1932
Doyle Johnson-- Temple, Texas December 26 th , 1932
Malcolm Davis-- Dallas, Texas January 6 th , 1933
John W. (Wes) Harryman -- Joplin, Missouri April 13 th , 1933
Harry McGuinnis -- Joplin, Missouri April 13 th , 1933
Henry D. Humphrey-- Alma, Arkansas June 26 th , 1933
Major Crowson -- Huntsville, Texas January 16 th , 1934
Wade McNabb -- Near the TX--LA border March 29 th , 1934
** believed by some to warrant inclusion in this list
E. B. Wheeler-- Grapevine, Texas April 1st, 1934
H. D. Murphy-- Grapevine, Texas April 1st, 1934
Cal Campbell-- Commerce, Oklahoma April 6 th , 1934

History of the Knights Templar

The Knights Templar were the elite fighting force of their day, highly trained, well-equipped and highly motivated one of the tenets of their religious order was that they were forbidden from retreating in battle, unless outnumbered three to one, and even then only by order of their commander, or if the Templar flag went down. Not all Knights Templar were warriors. The mission of most of the members was one of support – to acquire resources which could be used to fund and equip the small percentage of members who were fighting on the front lines. There were actually three classes within the orders. The highest class was the knight. When a candidate was sworn into the order, they made the knight a monk. They wore white robes. The knights could hold no property and receive no private letters. He could not be married or betrothed and cannot have any vow in any other Order. He could not have debt more than he could pay, and no infirmities. The Templar priest class was similar to the modern day military chaplain. Wearing green robes, they conducted religious services, led prayers, and were assigned record keeping and letter writing. They always wore gloves, unless they were giving Holy Communion. The mounted men-at-arms represented the most common class, and they were called "brothers". They were usually assigned two horses each and held many positions, including guard, steward, squire or other support vocations. As the main support staff, they wore black or brown robes and were partially garbed in chain mail or plate mail. The armor was not as complete as the knights. Because of this infrastructure, the warriors were well-trained and very well armed. Even their horses were trained to fight in combat, fully armored. [1] The combination of soldier and monk was also a powerful one, as to the Templar knights, martyrdom in battle was one of the most glorious ways to die.

The Templars were also shrewd tacticians, following the dream of Saint Bernard who had declared that a small force, under the right conditions, could defeat a much larger enemy. One of the key battles in which this was demonstrated was in 1177, at the Battle of Montgisard. The famous Muslim military leader Saladin was attempting to push toward Jerusalem from the south, with a force of 26,000 soldiers. He had pinned the forces of Jerusalem's King Baldwin IV, about 500 knights and their supporters, near the coast, at Ascalon. Eighty Templar knights and their own entourage attempted to reinforce. They met Saladin's troops at Gaza, but were considered too small a force to be worth fighting, so Saladin turned his back on them and headed with his army towards Jerusalem.

Once Saladin and his army had moved on, the Templars were able to join King Baldwin's forces, and together they proceeded north along the coast. Saladin had made a key mistake at that point – instead of keeping his forces together, he permitted his army to temporarily spread out and pillage various villages on their way to Jerusalem. The Templars took advantage of this low state of readiness to launch a surprise ambush directly against Saladin and his bodyguard, at Montgisard near Ramla. Saladin's army was spread too thin to adequately defend themselves, and he and his forces were forced to fight a losing battle as they retreated back to the south, ending up with only a tenth of their original number. The battle was not the final one with Saladin, but it bought a year of peace for the Kingdom of Jerusalem, and the victory became a heroic legend.

Another key tactic of the Templars was that of the "squadron charge". A small group of knights and their heavily armed warhorses would gather into a tight unit which would gallop full speed at the enemy lines, with a determination and force of will that made it clear that they would rather commit suicide than fall back. This terrifying onslaught would frequently have the desired result of breaking a hole in the enemy lines, thereby giving the other Crusader forces an advantage. [2]

The Templars, though relatively small in number, routinely joined other armies in key battles. They would be the force that would ram through the enemy's front lines at the beginning of a battle, or the fighters that would protect the army from the rear. They fought alongside King Louis VII of France, and King Richard I of England. [3] In addition to battles in Palestine, members of the Order also fought in the Spanish and Portuguese Reconquista.

Though initially an Order of poor monks, the official papal sanction made the Knights Templar a charity across Europe. Further resources came in when members joined the Order, as they had to take oaths of poverty, and therefore often donated large amounts of their original cash or property to the Order. Additional revenue came from business dealings. Since the monks themselves were sworn to poverty, but had the strength of a large and trusted international infrastructure behind them, nobles would occasionally use them as a kind of bank or power of attorney. If a noble wished to join the Crusades, this might entail an absence of years from their home. So some nobles would place all of their wealth and businesses under the control of Templars, to safeguard it for them until their return. The Order's financial power became substantial, and the majority of the Order's infrastructure was devoted not to combat, but to economic pursuits.

By 1150, the Order's original mission of guarding pilgrims had changed into a mission of guarding their valuables through an innovative way of issuing letters of credit, an early precursor of modern banking. Pilgrims would visit a Templar house in their home country, depositing their deeds and valuables. The Templars would then give them a letter which would describe their holdings. Modern scholars have stated that the letters were encrypted with a cipher alphabet based on a Maltese Cross however there is some disagreement on this, and it is possible that the code system was introduced later, and not something used by the medieval Templars themselves. [4] [5] [6] While traveling, the pilgrims could present the letter to other Templars along the way, to "withdraw" funds from their accounts. This kept the pilgrims safe since they were not carrying valuables, and further increased the power of the Templars.

The Knights' involvement in banking grew over time into a new basis for money, as Templars became increasingly involved in banking activities. One indication of their powerful political connections is that the Templars' involvement in usury did not lead to more controversy within the Order and the church at large. Officially the idea of lending money in return for interest was forbidden by the church, but the Order sidestepped this with clever loopholes, such as a stipulation that the Templars retained the rights to the production of mortgaged property. Or as one Templar researcher put it, "Since they weren't allowed to charge interest, they charged rent instead." [7]

Their holdings were necessary to support their campaigns in 1180, a Burgundian noble required 3 square kilometres of estate to support himself as a knight, and by 1260 this had risen to 15.6 km². The Order potentially supported up to 4,000 horses and pack animals at any given time, if provisions of the rule were followed these horses had extremely high maintenance costs due to the heat in Outremer (Crusader states at the Eastern Mediterranean), and had high mortality rates due to both disease and the Turkish bowmen strategy of aiming at a knight's horse rather than the knight himself. In addition, the high mortality rates of the knights in the East (regularly ninety percent in battle, not including wounded) resulted in extremely high campaign costs due to the need to recruit and train more knights. In 1244, at the battle of La Forbie, where only thirty-three of 300 knights survived, it is estimated the financial loss was equivalent to one-ninth of the entire Capetian yearly revenue. [ citation needed ]

The Templars' political connections and awareness of the essentially urban and commercial nature of the Outremer communities led the Order to a position of significant power, both in Europe and the Holy Land. [ citation needed ] They owned large tracts of land both in Europe and the Middle East, built churches and castles, bought farms and vineyards, were involved in manufacturing and import/export, had their own fleet of ships, and for a time even "owned" the entire island of Cyprus. [8]

Their success attracted the concern of many other orders, with the two most powerful rivals being the Knights Hospitaller and the Teutonic Knights. Various nobles also had concerns about the Templars as well, both for financial reasons, and nervousness about an independent army that was able to move freely through all borders.

The long-famed military acumen of the Templars began to stumble in the 1180s. On July 4, 1187, came the disastrous Battle of the Horns of Hattin, a turning point in the Crusades. It again involved Saladin, who had been beaten back by the Templars in 1177 in the legendary Battle of Montgisard near Tiberias, but this time Saladin was better prepared. Further, the Grand Master of the Templars was involved in this battle, Gerard de Ridefort, who had just achieved that lifetime position a few years earlier. He was not known as a good military strategist, and made some deadly errors, such as venturing out with his force of 80 knights without adequate supplies or water, across the arid hill country of Galilee. The Templars were overcome by the heat within a day, and then surrounded and massacred by Saladin's army. Within months Saladin captured Jerusalem.

But in the early 1190s, in a remarkably short and powerfully effective campaign, Richard the Lionheart, King of England and leader of the Third Crusade, together with his allies the Templars, delivered a series of powerful blows against Saladin and recovered much of Christian territory. In name and number the revived Crusader states were as before, but their outlines were diminished. There was the Kingdom of Jerusalem, though its capital was at Acre, which the Templars made their new headquarters. To the north was the County of Tripoli. But the Muslims retained control of the Syrian coast around Latakia for some time, and so the Principality of Antioch further to the north was now no longer contiguous to the other Crusader states. Nevertheless, the Third Crusade, in which Richard relied heavily on the Templars, had saved the Holy Land for the Christians and went a long way towards restoring Frankish fortunes. In this he was abetted by the military orders, whose great castles stood like islands of Frankish power amid the Muslim torrent. More than ever the Crusader states were relying on the military orders in their castles and on the field of battle, and the power of the orders grew. In fact at no point in their history would the Templars be more powerful than in the century to come.

But after the Siege of Acre in 1291, the Templars were forced to relocate their headquarters to the island of Cyprus.

Jacques de Molay, who was to be the last of the Order's Grand Masters, took office around 1292. One of his first tasks was to tour across Europe, to raise support for the Order and try to organise another Crusade. He met the newly invested Pope Boniface VIII, who agreed to grant the Templars the same privileges at Cyprus as they had held in the Holy Land. Charles II of Naples and Edward I also pledged varying types of support, either continuing to exempt the Templars from taxes, or pledging future support towards building a new army. [9]

Final attempts to regain the Holy Land (1298–1300) Edit

In 1298 or 1299, the military orders (the Knights Templar and Knights Hospitaller) and their leaders, including Jacques de Molay, Otton de Grandson and the Great Master of the Hospitallers, briefly campaigned in Armenia, in order to fight off an invasion by the Mamluks. They were not successful and soon the fortress of Roche-Guillaume in the Belen Pass, the last Templar stronghold in Antioch, was lost to the Muslims.

In 1300, the Templars, along with the Knights Hospitaller and forces from Cyprus attempted to retake the coastal city of Tortosa. They were able to take the island of Arwad, near Tortosa, but lost it soon after. With the loss of Arwad, the Crusaders had lost their last foothold in the Holy Land. [10]

Though they still had a base of operations in Cyprus, and controlled considerable financial resources, the Order of the Templars became an Order without a clear purpose or support, but which still had enormous financial power. This unstable situation contributed to their downfall.

King Philip had other [ clarification needed ] reasons to mistrust the Templars, as the organization had declared its desire to form its own state, similar to how the Teutonic Knights had founded Prussia. The Templars' preferred location for this was in the Languedoc of southeastern France, [ citation needed ] but they had also made a plan for the island of Cyprus. In 1306, the Templars had supported a coup on that island, which had forced King Henry II of Cyprus to abdicate his throne in favor of his brother, Amalric of Tyre. This probably made Philip particularly uneasy, since just a few years earlier he had inherited land in the region of Champagne, France, which was the Templars' headquarters. The Templars were already a "state within a state", were institutionally wealthy, paid no taxes, and had a large standing army which by papal decree could move freely through all European borders. However, this army no longer had a presence in the Holy Land, leaving it with no battlefield. These factors, plus the fact that Philip had inherited an impoverished kingdom from his father and was already deeply in debt to the Templars, were probably what led to his actions. [9] [10] However, recent studies emphasize the political and religious motivations of the French king. It seems that, with the "discovery" and repression of the "Templars' heresy," the Capetian monarchy claimed for itself the mystic foundations of the papal theocracy. The Temple case was the last step of a process of appropriating these foundations, which had begun with the Franco-papal rift at the time of Boniface VIII. Being the ultimate defender of the Catholic faith, the Capetian king was invested with a Christlike function that put him above the pope : what was at stake in the Templars' trial, then, was the establishment of a "royal theocracy". [11]

At dawn on Friday, October 13, 1307, scores of French Templars were simultaneously arrested by agents of King Philip, later to be tortured in locations such as the tower at Chinon, into admitting heresy and other sacrilegious offenses in the Order. Then they were put to death. There were five initial charges lodged against the Templars. The first was the renouncement and spitting on the cross during initiation into the Order. The second was the stripping of the man to be initiated and the thrice kissing of that man by the preceptor on the navel, posteriors and the mouth. The third was telling the neophyte (novice) that unnatural lust was lawful and indulged in commonly. The fourth was that the cord worn by the neophyte day and night was consecrated by wrapping it around an idol in the form of a human head with a great beard, and that this idol was adored in all chapters. The fifth was that the priests of the order did not consecrate the host in celebrating Mass. [12] [13] On August 12, 1308, the charges would be increased and would become more outrageous, one specifically stated that the Templars worshipped idols, specifically made of a cat and a head, the latter having three faces. The lists of articles 86 to 127[3] would add many other charges. [14] [15] The majority of these charges were identical to the charges that had been earlier issued against the inconvenient Pope Boniface VIII: accusations of denying Christ, spitting and urinating on the cross, and devil worship. Of the 138 Templars (many of them old men) questioned in Paris over the next few years, 105 of them "confessed" to denying Christ during the secret Templar initiations. 103 confessed to an "obscene kiss" being part of the ceremonies, and 123 said they spat on the cross. Throughout the trial there was never any physical evidence of wrongdoing, and no independent witnesses the only "proof" was obtained through confessions induced by torture. [7] The Templars reached out to the Pope for assistance, and Pope Clement did write letters to King Philip questioning the arrests, but took no further action.

Despite the fact that the confessions had been produced under duress, they caused a scandal in Paris, with mobs calling for action against the blaspheming Order. In response to this public pressure, along with more bullying from King Philip, Pope Clement issued the bull Pastoralis Praeeminentiae, which instructed all Christian monarchs in Europe to arrest all Templars and seize their assets. [16] Most monarchs simply didn't believe the charges, though proceedings were started in British Isles, Iberia, Kingdom of Germany, Italian Peninsula, and Kingdom of Cyprus, [17] with the likelihood of a confession being dependent on whether or not torture was used to extract it.

The dominant view is that Philip, who seized the treasury and broke up the monastic banking system, was jealous of the Templars' wealth and power, and frustrated by his enormous debt to them, sought to seize their financial resources for himself by bringing blatantly false charges against them at the Tours assembly in 1308. It is almost impossible to believe, that, under the influence of his carefully chosen advisors (the same that had persecuted Boniface), he actually believed the charges to be true. It is widely accepted that Philip had clearly made up the accusations, some nearly identical to those made against Boniface, and did not believe any of the Templars to have been party to such activities. It is a fact that he had invited Jacques de Molay to be a pall-bearer at the funeral of the King's sister on the very day before the arrests. [18]

The arrests caused some shifts in the European economy, from a system of military fiat back to European money, removing this power from Church orders. Seeing the fate of the Templars, the Hospitallers of St John of Jerusalem and of Rhodes were also convinced to give up banking at this time.

In 1312, after the Council of Vienne, and under extreme pressure from King Philip IV, Pope Clement V issued an edict officially dissolving the Order. Many kings and nobles who had been supporting the Knights up until that time, finally acquiesced and dissolved the orders in their fiefs in accordance with the Papal command. Most were not so brutal as the French. In England, many Knights were arrested and tried, but not found guilty.

Much of the Templar property outside France was transferred by the Pope to the Knights Hospitaller, and many surviving Templars were also accepted into the Hospitallers. In the Iberian Peninsula, where the king of Aragon was against giving the heritage of the Templars to the Hospitallers (as commanded by Clement V), the Order of Montesa took Templar assets.

The order continued to exist in Portugal, simply changing its name to the Order of Christ. This group was believed to have contributed to the first naval discoveries of the Portuguese. Prince Henry the Navigator led the Portuguese order for 20 years until the time of his death.

Even with the absorption of Templars into other Orders, there are still questions as to what became of all of the tens of thousands of Templars across Europe. There had been 15,000 "Templar Houses", and an entire fleet of ships. Even in France where hundreds of Templars had been rounded up and arrested, this was only a small percentage of the estimated 3,000 Templars in the entire country. Also, the extensive archive of the Templars, with detailed records of all of their business holdings and financial transactions, was never found. By papal bull it was to have been transferred to the Hospitallers.

A popular thread of conspiracy theory originating with Holy Blood, Holy Grail has it that the Templars used a fleet of 18 ships at La Rochelle to escape arrest in France. The fleet allegedly left laden with knights and treasures just before the issue of the warrant for the arrest of the Order in October 1307. [19] [20] This, in turn, was based on a single item of testimony from serving brother Jean de Châlon, who says he had "heard people talking that [Gerard de Villiers had] put to sea with 18 galleys, and the brother Hugues de Chalon fled with the whole treasury of the brother Hugues de Pairaud." [21] However, aside from being the sole source for this statement, the transcript indicates that it is hearsay, and this serving brother seems to be prone to making some of the wildest and most damning of claims about the Order, which have led some to doubt his credibility. [22]

In Holy Blood, Holy Grail, the knights that allegedly boarded these ships then escaped to Scotland, but in some versions the Templars are even claimed to have left for North America, burying a treasure in Oak Island, Nova Scotia, Canada (a story taken up in the 2004 movie National Treasure starring Nicolas Cage). [23] However, many historians have questioned the plausibility of this scenario. For example, historian Helen Nicholson has argued that

The Templars did have ships to carry personnel, pilgrims and supplies across the Mediterranean between the West and East and back, but if the Hospital after 1312 is any guide they did not have more than four galleys (warships) and few other ships, and if they needed more they hired them. They certainly could not spare ships to indulge in world exploration . [T]he records of the port of La Rochelle show that the Templars were exporting wine by ship. This was not a fleet in any modern sense: again, those would have been transport vessels rather than warships, and the Templars probably hired them as they needed them, rather than buying their own. . The ships would have been very small by modern standards, too shallow in draught and sailing too low in the water to be able to withstand the heavy waves and winds of the open Atlantic, and suited for use only in the relatively shallow waters of the continental shelf. What was more, they could not carry enough water to be at sea for long periods. [24]

Nicholson's argument, however, is an assessment of the fleet in 1312 - according to the LaRochelle Theory, many ships would already have disappeared bound for many of the aforementioned destinations and stands to reason their fleet would seem depleted in the following years after the arrest of the Templars.

There were five initial charges lodged against the Templars. The first was the renouncement and spitting on the cross during initiation into the Order. The second was the stripping of the man to be initiated and the thrice kissing of that man by the preceptor on the navel, posteriors and the mouth. The third was telling the neophyte (novice) that unnatural lust was lawful and indulged in commonly. The fourth was that the cord worn by the neophyte day and night was consecrated by wrapping it around an idol in the form of a human head with a great beard, and that this idol was adored in all chapters. The fifth was that the priests of the order did not consecrate the host in celebrating Mass. [12] Subsequently, the charges would be increased and would become, according to the procedures, lists of articles 86 to 127[3] in which will be added a few other charges, such as the prohibition to priests who do not belong to the order. [14]

The incontrovertibility of the evidence that the Templar priests did not mutilate the words of consecration in the mass is furnished in the Cypriote proceedings by ecclesiastics who had long dwelt with them in the East. [25]

Debate continues as to whether the accusation of religious heresy had merit by the standards of the time. Under torture, some Templars admitted to sodomy and to the worship of heads and an idol known as Baphomet. [26] Their leaders later denied these admissions, and for that were executed. Some scholars, such as Malcolm Barber, Helen Nicholson and Peter Partner, discount these as forced admissions, typical during the Medieval Inquisition.

The majority of the charges were identical to other people being tortured by the Inquisitors, with one exception: head worship. The Templars were specifically charged with worshipping some type of severed head a charge which was made only against Templars. The descriptions of the head allegedly venerated by the Templars were varied and contradictory in nature. Quoting Norman Cohn:

Some describe it as having three faces, others as having four feet, others as being simply a face with no feet. For some it was a human skull, embalmed and encrusted with jewels for others it was carved out of wood. Some maintained that it came from the remains of a former grand master of the order, while others were equally convinced that it was Baphomet – which in turn was interpreted as 'Mohammed'. Some saw it as having horns. [27]

Barber has linked this charge to medieval folklore about magical heads, and the popular medieval belief that the Muslims worshipped idols. [28] Some argue it referred to rituals involving the alleged relics of John the Baptist, [29] Euphemia, [30] one of Ursula's eleven maidens, [31] and/or Hugues de Payens [32] rather than pagan idols.

The charges of heresy included spitting, trampling, or urinating on the cross while naked, being kissed obscenely by the receptor on the lips, navel, and base of the spine heresy and worship of idols institutionalized sodomy and also accusations of contempt of the Holy Mass and denial of the sacraments. Barbara Frale has suggested that these acts were intended to simulate the kind of humiliation and torture that a Crusader might be subjected to if captured by the Saracens. According to this line of reasoning, they were taught how to commit apostasy with the mind only and not with the heart. [33]

The accusation of venerating Baphomet is more problematic. Karen Ralls has noted, "There is no mention of Baphomet either in the Templar Rule or in other medieval period Templar documents". [34] The late scholar Hugh J. Schonfield speculated that the chaplains of the Knights Templar created the term Baphomet through the Atbash cipher to encrypt the Gnostic term Sophia (Greek for "wisdom") due to the influence of hypothetical Qumran Essene scrolls, which they may have found during archaeological digs in the Kingdom of Jerusalem. [35]

The papal process started by Pope Clement V, to investigate both the Order as a whole and its members individually found virtually no knights guilty of heresy outside France. Fifty-four knights were executed in France by French authorities as relapsed heretics after denying their original testimonies before the papal commission these executions were motivated by Philip's desire to prevent Templars from mounting an effective defence of the Order. It failed miserably, as many members testified against the charges of heresy in the ensuing papal investigation. [ citation needed ]

Despite the poor defense of the Order, when the papal commission ended its proceedings on June 5, 1311, it found no evidence that the Order itself held heretical doctrines, or used a "secret rule" apart from the Latin and French rules. On October 16, 1311, at the General Council of Vienne held in Dauphiné, the council voted for the maintenance of the Order. [ citation needed ]

But on March 22, 1312, Clement V promulgated the bull Vox in excelsis in which he stated that although there was not sufficient reason to condemn the Order, for the common good, the hatred of the Order by Philip IV, the scandal brought about by their trial, and the likely dilapidation of the Order that would result from the trial, the Order was to be suppressed by the pope's authority over it. But the order explicitly stated that dissolution was enacted, "with a sad heart, not by definitive sentence, but by apostolic provision." [36]

This was followed by the papal bull Ad Providum on May 2, 1312, which granted all of the Order's lands and wealth to the Hospitallers so that its original purpose could be met, despite Philip's wishes that the lands in France pass to him. Philip held onto some lands until 1318, and in England the crown and nobility held a great deal until 1338 in many areas of Europe the land was never given over to the Hospitaller Order, instead taken over by nobility and monarchs in an attempt to lessen the influence of the Church and its Orders. Of the knights who had not admitted to the charges, against those whom nothing had been found, or those who had admitted but been reconciled to the Church, some joined the Hospitallers (even staying in the same Templar houses) others joined Augustinian or Cistercian houses and still others returned to secular life with pension. In Portugal and Aragon, the Holy See granted the properties to two new Orders, the Order of Christ and the Order of Montesa respectively, made up largely of Templars in those kingdoms. In the same bull, he urged those who had pleaded guilty be treated "according to the rigours of justice." [ citation needed ]

In the end, the only three accused of heresy directly by the papal commission were Jacques de Molay, Grand Master of the Knights Templar, and his two immediate subordinates they were to renounce their heresy publicly, when de Molay regained his courage and proclaimed the order's and his innocence along with Geoffrey de Charney. The two were arrested by French authorities as relapsed heretics and burned at the stake in 1314. Their ashes were then ground up and dumped into the Seine, so as to leave no relics behind. [ citation needed ]

In England the Crown was also deeply in debt to the Templars, and probably on that basis, the Templars were also persecuted in England, their lands forfeited and taken by others, (the last private owner being the favorite of Edward II, Hugh le Despenser). Many of Templars in England were killed some fled to Scotland and other places. [37] In France, Philip IV, who was also coincidentally in terrible financial debt to the Templars was perhaps the more aggressive persecutor. So widely was the injustice of Philip's rage against the Templars perceived that the "Curse of the Templars" became legend: Reputedly uttered by the Grand Master Jacques de Molay upon the stake whence he burned, he adjured: "Within one year, God will summon both Clement and Philip to His Judgment for these actions." The fact that both rulers died within a year, as predicted, only heightened the scandal surrounding the suppression of the Order. The source of this legend does not date from the time of the execution of Jacques de Molay. [38]

In September 2001, Barbara Frale discovered a copy of the Chinon Parchment dated 17–20 August 1308 in the Vatican Secret Archives, a document that indicated that Pope Clement V absolved the leaders of the Order in 1308. Frale published her findings in the Journal of Medieval History in 2004 [33] In 2007, The Vatican published the Chinon Parchment as part of a limited edition of 799 copies of Processus Contra Templarios. [39] Another Chinon parchment dated 20 August 1308 addressed to Philip IV of France, well known to historians, [40] [41] [42] stated that absolution had been granted to all those Templars that had confessed to heresy "and restored them to the Sacraments and to the unity of the Church". [43] [44]

The extermination procedure in the gas chambers

SS men escorted the men, women, and children selected for death to the gas chambers&mdashinitially to the gas chamber in crematorium I and &ldquobunkers&rdquo 1 and 2, and, from the spring of 1943, to the gas chambers in crematoria II, III, IV, and V.

Trucks carried those too infirm to walk, and the rest marched. These people had to disrobe before entering the gas chambers. In crematorium I, they undressed either in the yard (surrounded by a wall) or in the antechamber. Wooden barracks were erected for this purpose at bunkers 1 and 2. There were special undressing rooms at crematoria II-V.

When large numbers of transports were arriving in 1944, the people assigned to death in the gas chamber in crematorium V also disrobed in the open air. After the Sonderkommando was quartered in the undressing room in crematorium IV, the people sent to die there undressed in a specially constructed barracks.

The SS men kept the people fated to die unaware of what awaited them. They were told that they were being sent to the camp, but that they first had to undergo disinfection and bathe. After the victims undressed, they were taken into the gas chamber, locked in, and killed with Zyklon B gas.

After they were killed, Sonderkommando prisoners dragged the corpses out of the gas chambers. They cut off the women&rsquos hair and removed all metal dental work and jewelry. Then they burned the corpses in pits, on pyres, or in the crematorium furnaces. (Until September 1942, some of the corpses were buried in mass graves these corpses were burned from September to November 1942.)

Bones that did not burn completely were ground to powder with pestles and then dumped, along with the ashes, in the rivers Soła and Vistula and in nearby ponds, or strewn in the fields as fertilizer, or used as landfill on uneven ground and in marshes.

Watch the video: The Zapatista Uprising 20 Years Later (July 2022).


  1. Stefford

    It is not compliant

  2. Tempeltun

    Well, tin of course ...

  3. Tawfiq

    What did you do in my place?

  4. Kassa

    What an entertaining topic

  5. Tesar

    How should I know?

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